3 options for a 2009 Mariners Re-Draft

The Mariners drafted Dustin Ackley from UNC with the 2nd overall pick in 2009, but what if they went a different direction?
Mike Trout, Baltimore Orioles v Los Angeles Angels
Mike Trout, Baltimore Orioles v Los Angeles Angels / Ric Tapia/GettyImages
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Mariners #2 choice: AJ Pollock

Now let me explain, I understand Pollock was horrible in Seattle last year. He hit .173 and wasn't great defensively either, but that was a washed AJ Pollock. Back in the day, AJ was one of the best center fielders in the National League. In 2015, Pollock hit .315, stole 39 bags, won a Gold Glove, and finished 15th in MVP culture.

Did Dustin ever have a year like that?

Pollock was taken by Arizona at #17, 15 picks below Ackley. Over his seven years with the Snakes, Pollock racked up 18.7 bWAR and hit .281 in 2507 plate appearances. In his prime, AJ was a rare 5 tool player when healthy, able to hit for power, play center field, steal bags, and hit for average.

The Mariners could have used him back in 2014 and 2016, seasons in which Seattle barely missed the playoffs. In AJ's seven years in Arizona, they only reached the Postseason once and got swept in the 2017 NLDS by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Pollock has had his share of injuries that derailed his career (including a big one in 2016), but he was an ascending star before the health concerns piled up. The Mariners missed out on the 2014 Wild Card by two games in 2014, but with an All Star in center instead of James Jones in 2014, who knows what could have been?